04 Oct 2011

Hackers may set sights on search engines

According to the Brisbane Times in Australia, search engines may need some extra scrutiny by users, as speakers at the National Identity and Hi Tech Crime Symposium said hackers may take advantage of internet user's trust in search engines. It is important for users to be aware of internet security and have antivirus software on at all times.

A common technique used by scammers was to hack into a website and modify it depending on who the user is. While the website could look fine to those who arrive there directly, arriving through a search engine could take them to a different area and infect them with a virus, according to the news source.

After a user has had their computer hacked into, a common way of getting deeper into it is through free antivirus software to clean the computer, which turns out to be fake scareware, the Brisbane Times reports. Scammers can also manipulate the information given to search engines so what appears in the search engine will be related to the trending topic, while the website contains no related information.

Squidoo says the second most common type of hacking is Google hacking, which refers to techniques used to gain information through advanced search queries. The website said that users can protect themselves by using internet security software and avoiding any storage of critical or sensitive data on a website server if they use a website.